Nate Perkins has used a clear mind, solid focus, and pure determination to carve out his path in the professional disc golf scene. For the last few years, Perkins has seen his game improve throughout each tournament he’s competed in.
Now a member of Team Discmania, Perkins has seen the hard work begin to pay off thanks in part to a strong showing on the Disc Golf Pro Tour’s Waco Charity Open earlier this year.
We caught up with Perkins in between tour stops as he travels the country.
You tried disc golf in the late 90s but it took you over a decade to start playing disc golf more seriously. How actively did you play during that time?
I was moderately active from the late 90s until I started back up in college in 2013. I played a few times a year throughout grade school with various friends. We were all so active in other school associated sports that disc golf was certainly on the back burner.
You made your PDGA debut in 2014 after seeing the top players at Texas State Disc Golf Championship. You’ve previously mentioned that this had an impact on your hobby. Did your perspective on disc golf change back then?
My perspective certainly changed after watching the pros play in person. They skills they demonstrated were inspiring and the fire was lit to one day compete alongside them.
Who is Nate Perkins outside disc golf?
Nate is an adventurer... a fisherman... a cartographer. I truly have a passion for traveling and exploring the world we find ourselves in. I do not feel tied down to one type of an individual because we have so much information at our fingertips that allows us to continue to grow as humans.
What’s your favorite thing to do when you’re not playing disc golf?
Toss up between hiking with friends and fishing.
Your tour schedule looks very busy. What plans do you have besides the events?
Alyssa Van Lanen, my touring partner and girlfriend, always finds a way to keep us busy :) She has lofty dreams outside the world of disc golf and I devote my time to help them grow. We also have a lot of plans just around the travelling. It is hard to miss any of the National Parks we find ourselves near week to week.
Seems like your season is off to a great start. Second place finish at Waco is an incredible feat. What did you take from that event? How are you feeling going further into the season?
Wow. To compete at such a high level for three rounds. I took from the event a bit more of an understanding of what it takes to win at this level. I took from it a lifelong memory. Going further into the season I know I have what it takes to win. I have a few things to work on around the putting green and I truly believe I will find myself at the top again this year.
What are your greatest strengths as a competitor?
Playing to my strengths. Playing within my limits and fully understanding the edges of my limits. I don’t throw out of bounds and I steer clear of the bogeys.
What do you look forward to most in 2018?
Fishing for stripers on Nantucket island with the homies!
Do you have a specific goal for the year?
I qualified for the 2018 USDGC. I believe I can win. My goal is to provide myself the best opportunity to do so when the time comes. To truly be able to tell myself I brought everything I have and laid it all out on the table.
Is there a specific Discmania disc that has helped you to reinvent your game?
FD, of course!
Keep up with Perkins as he competes on tour and follow him Instagram @natoperkins.
Photos: Alyssa Van Lanen